Friday, November 27, 2009

Pork Chop Pineapple Juice Marinade

Ahhh pineapple juice. Poor pineapple juice. I don't know whether to high five you or just shake my head.

When I typed pineapple juice into google to seach for a marinade, out of the top 5 suggested searches, three of them were about whether pineapple juice makes a certain bodily fluid taste "better". Really? Are there THAT many people googling that?

Surely, there's more to pineapple juice than that. It's acidic and sweet, perfect for a marinade. I couldn't find anything that I liked online so I turned to Joy of Cooking and perused the section on marinades for some ideas and made up the following, adapting a citrus marinade. I named it after a lyric in the B-52's song, Stobe Light. oooo-waaaaaah!

"I'm Gonna Kiss Your Pineapple!" Pork Chops
4 ea pork chops, 1" or more thick

1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup pineapple juice
1.5 tablespoons red wine
1/4 cup parsley, fresh chopped
1 tablespoon tarragon, fresh chopped
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper, ground
1/4 cup red onion, diced

1/4 ea bell pepper, very thin sliced
1/4 ea red onion, very thin sliced
2 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Whisk oil into the wine & pineapple juice. Mix in remaining marinade ingredients. Marinade chops for 4-6 hours.

Remove chops from marinade and grill over direct heat at 450-500f for about 4 minutes a side (rotate 90 degrees half way through each side to get nice grid marks).

Check internal temp with an instant read thermometer and pull at 145f. If not done after the 8 minutes, switch to indirect heat and finish roasting until 145f.

Top with the onion/pepper slaw.

I was worried how the flavors would work since I really didn't know what I was doing. But not only the the marinade keep the pork juicy during the high temp cook, it tasted great. And the slaw isn't just a garnish. The flavors bring a little sweet/sour to the party and completed the dish. We'll definitely make this one again.

Christmas Gift Idea: If you have a griller on your shopping list, consider getting them a grilling pan like this one for under $20. They are great for doing veggies like the asparagus I did tonight.

TIP: Layer your flavors. Notice how two of the lemons pieces have been squeezed in the pic but two haven't? I did the first two over the asparagus at the beginning while I let the other two grill. As the pan came off, I squeezed the grilled ones over the asparagus. In theory the high temps help caramelize the sugars in the lemon and give the second dose a different taste. I saw that on Flay or Florence and it made sense to me.

Asparagus is high in iron. Apparently it is high in irony too.